10 Days Scotland Road Trip Itinerary

Hiking in Glencoe

From its magical highlands to its medieval towns and cities, traveling to Scotland is a cultural and fascinating adventure. I mean, it's one of the world's greenest and arguably most beautiful countries! Follow this 10-day Scotland road trip itinerary and discover the absolute best of the country.

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Table of Contents

Day 1: Glasgow

Arrive for one day in Glasgow and get a brief introduction to Scotland’s largest city! Edinburgh may be the capital, but Glasgow is actually the biggest city in both size and population. Here you’ll find trendy bars, music venues, unique cafes and restaurants, along with many fascinating museums and the best shopping in the UK outside of London.

Here are some of the best things to do with one day in Glasgow.

 

Walk up Buchanan Street.

Buchanan Street is the bustling city centre street in the heart of Glasgow. You’ll find detailed historical buildings, excellent shopping, and the beautiful Princes Square.

See Gallery of Modern Art & The Duke of Wellington Statue.

Right off Buchan Street, you’ll find a true symbol of Glasgow. The free-to-visit Gallery of Modern Art (GoMA) is housed inside an 18th-century building featuring rotating exhibitions, an art shop, and even a quaint cafe.

In front of GoMA, however, is the Duke of Wellington State – a true symbol of Glaswegian humor. This statue is known to be sported a traffic cone (or two) on top of his head, and his horse can even oftentimes be seen rockin’ one too.

Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum
Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum

Check out the Kelvingrove Art Gallery & Museum.

Made from Glasgow’s red sandstone, the building is an attraction of its own. Though once inside this free museum, expect to be greeted by works from Vincent Van Gogh, Claude Monet, and Salvador Dali’s masterpiece ‘Christ of St John of the Cross’. With 22 galleries on display, you’ll see everything from animals to designs from Scotland’s architect Charles Rennie Mackintosh.

Have drinks at Waxy O’ Connors.

Celebrate your first night in Scotland! One of Glasgow’s most uniquely designed bars, Waxy O’ Connors has three floors and six different bars with a very treehouse-like vibe as it’s made almost entirely out of wood. The bar is right in the city centre, between Buchanan Street and George Square. It’s a must-visit pub in Glasgow.

Discover other things to do in Glasgow

Day 2: Glasgow to Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park

Less than an hour’s drive northwest of Glasgow you’ll find one of the most popular lochs (or lakes) and national parks in Scotland. With loch cruises, water excursions, hiking, cycling, and village explorations, there are plenty of things to do in the Loch Lomond area.

Loch Lomond
Loch Lomond

Here is how to spend a day at Loch Lomond.

 

Visit the village of Luss.

On your way from Glasgow to Loch Lomond, make a stop at the picturesque village of Luss. It’s located on the west bank of Loch Lomond with much of its village dating back to the 18th and 19th centuries. Wander the town, enjoy the bursting floral gardens, and soak up some nice views of the water.

Visit the Village Rest or the Coach House Coffee Shop for lunch spots in Luss.

Kayak or canoe on Loch Lomond.

If you want to get even more intimate with the waters, skip a cruise and book a kayaking or canoeing adventure! This is a fun way to spend your 2nd day in Scotland. Find kayak rentals and group tours here.

Rest and Be Thankful- Arrochar Pass
Rest and Be Thankful- Arrochar Pass

Spend the night in Inveraray.

Head 30 min away to Inveraray and stay in a historic, white-washed village, also by the water.

Have dinner at the traditional and tasty The George. It is also a hotel and has some gorgeous and cozy rooms!

Day 3 Inveraray to Oban

Day 3 in Scotland will be spent leisurely exploring Inveraray and making your way towards the charming town of Oban on the west coast. The town is known for its hovering colosseum-like McCaig’s Tower, built in the late 1800s.

Spend the morning exploring Inveraray.

Here you’ll find the Inveraray Castle, an old jailhouse, and perfect spots for ice cream by the water. The town itself is quaint and easy to explore. There is often a moody mist hovering above Loch Fyne.

Drive towards Oban.

Drive roughly an hour outside of Inveraray and the Loch Lomond area and head towards Oban. The seaside town is located a bit further west and is one of the most beautiful towns in Scotland.

Along the way, you’ll pass by the charming Loch Awe. So, feel free to make photo pit stops and soak up all the beauty of the Argyll & Bute region. The area is vast, green, and full of picturesque moments. You can take your time getting to Oban as you’ll still have a full day in the town.

weekend in Oban
weekend in Oban

Visit the Oban Distillery.

It’s not a trip to Scotland without some whisky! Visit the Oban Distillery and try a tasting or simply do a tour. It’s an old, historic building and they distill some pretty delicious concoctions. It’s the perfect way to round off a full day of travelling around Scotland.

Meet a local

  • Take a Historical Tour and Seafood to places off the beaten tourist track and knowledgeable guide provides a unique insight to local history the area and culture. The tour ends with a seafood experience where fresh seafood is served in an alfresco location. Prices from $84.55

Day 4: Oban & the Isles

Spend day 4 getting to know Oban a bit better and even embark on a day trip to the nearby uninhabited isles.

Take a boat trip to three isles: Iona, Staffa, and Mull.

Take a tour to explore some of Scotland’s remote islands on the west coast. This exciting tour leaves from Oban and takes visitors to three isles: Mull, Iona, and Staffa along with wildlife and the sea along the way.

Staffa in particular is special for its beautiful hexagonal rock formations in a sea cave known as Fingal’s Cave. Though Staffa itself is uninhabited, it’s still one of the best places to visit in Scotland for its miraculous natural beauty. If you visit in summer there’s also a chance to see puffins on Staffa! This tour is a full-day trip from Oban but there are shorter tours that only go to Staffa with views of the nearby isles.

Day 5: Oban to Inverness

This is one of the most exciting days on your 10-day Scotland road trip itinerary! You’ll spend a lot of time on the road exploring some of the most admired places in the country (and the Scottish Highlands!).

Depart Oban early, prepare some snacks, and get ready for a fantastic day of driving in the Scottish Highlands. You’ll be seeing sweeping views, lochs, cows, and plenty of sheep along the way. It’s a very Scottish drive.

Visit the Three Sisters of Glencoe.

As you make your way north up the A82, you’ll inevitably come across the Three Sisters of Glencoe. This cluster of three mountains creates one of the most iconic and picturesque places in all of Scotland. Steeping in rich history and folklore, Glencoe is a must-see during your first visit to Scotland.

You’ll often find a bagpipe player performing proudly in front of the viewpoint. You can also take a short stroll through the nearby trails for added mystic.

Hiking in Glencoe
Hiking in Glencoe

See the Urquhart Castle along Loch Ness.

Thanks to the legends of the Loch Ness Monster Nessie, this is easily the most famous loch in Scotland. This long and deep loch is a sight to see in itself. However, one of the major attractions along the loch is the Urquhart Castle. Dating back to 1509, this ruined castle rests next to the mighty loch. It’s eerily picturesque, especially when there is a soft mist lifting from the loch behind it.

You can also check out the visitor centre and cafe while visiting Urquhart Castle.

Arrive at Inverness.

After a long and exciting day driving around Scotland, arrive happily to Inverness at your chosen accommodation and rest up for another amazing day in the Highlands.

Day 6: Inverness & Culloden

Spend the morning acquainting yourself with Inverness, the capital of the Highlands. Take a walk to the main attraction, the spectacular Inverness Castle overlooking the River Ness. Make sure you take a stroll along the River Ness and around St Andrews Cathedral

If you would like to learn more about Scottish life in the Highlands and see some of the work from local craftspeople head to Inverness Museum and Art Gallery

Meet a local

  • Take Inverness City Centre Walking Tour. On this 1.5 hour tour, you will explore the history and modern culture of Inverness. You’ll learn about how the city has grown from its humble beginnings into officially the happiest city in Scotland. This is a family-friendly, leisurely stroll around the city. Price from $17.46

Visit Culloden and see the historic battlefield.

If you’re interested in Scottish history or are a fan of Outlander, a visit to the Culloden Battlefield just outside of Inverness is a must. 

The battlefield also includes a museum highlighting the history of the Jacob Risings. The Jacobite Rising of 1745 was a rebellion led by Prince Charles Edward Stuart to reclaim the British throne for his father James Francis Edward Stuart.

However, on the sorrowful morning of April 16, 1746, the Jacobites fought their final battle. It’s a battle that changed Highland culture forever. Whether you know much about the Risings or not, this museum is immersive and full of interesting facts and stories.

Free entrance with National Trust of Scotland Membership 

Clava Cairns
Clava Cairns

Hop over to the ancient Clava Cairns. 

After an insightful experience at Culloden, hop over to the nearby Clava Cairns. These are 4,000-year-old prehistoric burial sites with stone circles. It’s a fascinating place to see some of the world’s oldest cairns and a glimpse into the Bronze Age. Plus, it’s completely free to visit.

Clava Cairns6m east of Inverness. Signposted from the B9091, 300 yards east of Culloden Battlefield

Day 7: Inverness to Pitlochry

On Day 7 you’ll be driving south along the picturesque Cairngorms National Park as you make your way to Pitlochry. Pitlochry is an outdoorsy paradise with many things to do like hiking, white water rafting, gorge jumping, golfing, and more. It is also a very popular destination for a pampering weekend break because of easy train connections from London or Edinburgh. 

Drive along the Cairngorms National Park.

Along this route, you can do some wildlife watching and soak up phenomenal views of Scotland. It’s a great opportunity to see a highland cow, too! The route of Scotland road trip itinerary follows the A9 which passes through plenty of quaint villages as well.

Visit the Atholl Palace Museum.

Whether you decide to tour the museum, which explores the tales, Victorian history, and history of the Atholl Palace Hotel, just seeing this building is interesting enough. Opening in 1987, this gorgeous hotel boasts phenomenal views of the nearby mountains set among lively greenery. It’s one of the most photogenic buildings in Pitlochry.

Have dinner at Victoria’s Restaurant.

With a beautiful setting plus excellent food, an extensive wine menu, and coffee, Victoria’s Restaurant is a great place to eat dinner in Pitlochry. Try haggis bonbons, steak and ale pie, or Scottish salmon. There are gluten-free and vegetarian options as well.

pretty vilage in scottish highlands
Pitlochry

Day 8: Pitlochry to Edinburgh via St Andrews

Day 8 will be taking you to the enchanting capital city with a few memorable stops along the way of your Scotland road trip. 

Drive to St. Andrews.

After breakfast in Pitlochry, make your way towards the delightful seaside town of St. Andrews. Known for its prestigious university, golf, and charming streets, St. Andrews is sure not to disappoint. Spend the morning wandering around the town,

Visit the St. Andrews Cathedral.

This 12th-century cathedral is primarily in ruins, but it is still a captivating place to visit in St. Andrews. The cathedral was built in 1158 and quickly became the center of the Medieval Catholic Church in Scotland. It later fell into disuse and ruin after Catholic mass was outlawed during the 16th-century.

You will also find the ruined 13th-century St. Andrews Castle nearby.

Meet a local and learn more about St Andrews in a walking tour in the company of a local guide who has dedicated his life’s research to the forgotten history of this Scottish town

Visit the historic village of Culross.

If you’re a fan of Outlander, you might recognize Culross. The Mercat Cross in Culross embodies 17th and 18th century Scotland, and that’s most likely why it was chosen as the setting for the village in season 1.

Whether you’ve seen the series or not, a walk through Culross is sure to be remembered. The cobblestone streets, old stone buildings, and quaint squares make it one of the most beautiful villages in Scotland

Free entrance with National Trust of Scotland Membership 

Culross
Culross

Arrive at Edinburgh.

Arrive in Edinburgh in the early evening! Enjoy a short stroll around the medieval Old Town and have dinner of your choice in the city. Plus, Edinburgh looks exceptionally gorgeous when it is lit up at night! The clock tower and castle shine bright, casting light down upon the cobbled streets. It’s impressive

Edinburgh city panorama. Scotland by train
Edinburgh panorama- view from Calton Hill

Day 9: Edinburgh

Day 9 will be spent wandering Edinburgh, which is arguably the most beautiful capital city in the world. We recommend following our self-guided walking tour to uncover the best of Edinburgh along with several hidden gems along the way.

After the walking tour, we also recommend visiting the Sheep Heid Inn for dinner and drinks. It’s rumored to be the oldest pub in Scotland, established back in 1360. It’s very cozy and traditional and offers excellent views of Arthur’s Seat and the surrounding landscapes.

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Meet a local

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10 Days Scotland Road Trip Itinerary
About me
Scotland Itinerary planning

My name is Kate and I created Scotland Itinerary Planning to give you those life-changing experiences right in the beautiful country I call home.

I’m proud to live in Edinburgh, Scotland, one of the world’s most beautiful capital cities. Living in Edinburgh has provided me a base to explore extensively around this magical little country.

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